Margaret Thatcher, Stobhill Hospital and Lenzie Post Office – this week’s Letters to the Editor

Stobhill Hospital
Stobhill Hospital
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READERS have a say on the issues which matter – April 17, 2013

HAVING read Robert Penney’s letter about Townhead School, I also went to the school at the same time.

His memories of Big Mac brought my own back. It was a great school, no bullying and a great bunch of teachers.

Of course, don’t forget the belt kept us at bay! Many happy days.

A Smart,


I VIVIDLY remember the school visits of Rev. Haughton to Townhead Primary in the late 50s or early 60s.

In particular, I remember him cutting an apple in half ‘the wrong way’ to reveal the five pointed star shape formed by the core.

Sadly, I cannot remember the point of that particular story.

Perhaps it lay in my sub-conscious emerging only decades later to influence my vocation to ministry in the 1990s.

He was a neighbour of my parents on Union Street in my infancy, but I doubt that had any subsequent effect.

They broke the mould . . . as they say. May he rest in peace.

The Reverend Duncan James Jeffrey,

Richmond Hill

Presbyterian Church,

Ontario, Canada.

THE UK’s meningitis charities have joined forces and written to Prime Minister David Cameron.

In 2011, Mr Cameron said that the idea of children dying from preventable diseases is unthinkable in this day and age and pledged to save lives in the developing world by ensuring vaccine availability.

Yet UK children are still exposed to a deadly disease which can kill them in hours or leave them severely disabled.

This is Meningitis B, the most common form of meningitis in the UK. It kills more children aged under five than any other infection.

Thankfully, help is in sight. In January, a new Meningitis B vaccine – Bexsero® – received a licence from the European Commission.

It is the first Meningitis B vaccine licensed for use in the UK and could save thousands of lives.

Over the next few weeks the UK Government is considering whether to introduce this vaccine into the Routine Childhood Immunisation Schedule, so it will be given to children through the NHS.

We are determined to ensure this life-saving vaccine is introduced as soon as possible, and the support of your readers is crucial for achieving this. We also want to make sure the vaccine isn’t delayed by the major changes currently taking place in the NHS.

On average, 1,870 cases of Meningitis B occur in the UK every year – every one life-changing, regardless of the outcome.

One in 10 people who contract the disease will die and one in three will be left with devastating after-effects, such as limb loss or brain damage.

So, with every day that passes until this vaccine is introduced, many more lives are destroyed.

We believe the lives of our children must be made a priority. Only when the Meningitis B vaccine is introduced into the immunisation schedule will it change the meningitis landscape forever, saving lives and preventing children facing a lifetime of suffering.

We will continue campaigning for vaccination and raising awareness of the disease and its symptoms. And we urge everyone to be aware of this issue and support the need for a Meningitis B vaccine.

Chris Head,

CEO Meningitis

Research Foundation.

WE are big cat researchers from Big Cats in Britain who are very interested in meeting or talking with the witnesses in the area who have seen a big cat, or found evidence that may point towards a large feline.

We are appealing for witnesses to any big cats in the area, old or new, to try and establish a pattern of the animals’ movements.

No matter how trivial you may think the experience to be we would still like to hear from you.

We are also appealing for any person who has found prints, taken pictures or video footage to contact us. Personal details and even locations will be kept confidential if that is the witness’s wish.

Also, if any land owners are willing to allow us to set up quietly with the minimum of fuss on their land for a few days suggestions as to where we can set up would also be appreciated.

We currently have over 60 remote infra-red trail cameras in locations all over the country in the hope of catching one of these animals on film and we are always on the lookout for new locations to place them.

Our researchers are based in various parts of the country and are able to follow up sightings if they deem further research.

Mark Fraser,

The latest estimate for Mrs Thatcher’s funeral stands at £10,000,000.

I am assuming that this is coming from the public purse, if so it is disgraceful, especially in these straitened times.

To put it mildly, she was not the most popular Prime Minister in Scotland and this will do little for the coalition’s popularity. The Government’s decision to provide a military funeral is, I assume, because of her handling of the Falklands conflict, which was a Godsend to her to be re-elected when her popularity was waning.

While on the subject, after the war crime of the sinking of the Belgrano, what happened to the Conqueror’s logbook?

Finlay Dow,

Netherton Oval,


I HAVE become aware that our G66 4LQ Post Office (Lenzie) is scheduled to close sometime soon, which I and others cannot accept.

This office covers the whole conurbation of Lenzie and hundreds of houses on the site of the former Woodilee Hospital.

One might accept there is need to review and consolidate savings at Counter Services throughout UK Post Offices, but clear reviews of the impact must also be made of the customer base.

I rather doubt this has not taken place.

Stories in the Kirkintilloch Herald indicate that the re-location of the Counter Service will be at the Co-op premises in Gallowhill Road G66, which is actually on the Kirkintilloch side of Gallowhill Road.

There is very little parking at this locus and walking distance from the present location for anyone, particularly the elderly, has clearly not been taken into account and is unacceptable.

There is an alternative location at the Co-op outlet at Millersneuk Road, Lenzie, which would mean little inconvenience to present customers.

There’s reasonable public parking for customers and Royal Mail vehicles and opening times would match those at the Gallowhill proposal.

Was this review made public?

How was the criteria and outcome arrived at?

Was a tender process invited through the media to interested parties to make offer in running a Post Office Counter Service in Lenzie?

Concerned Lenzie resident.

OVER time I have read often in your paper of the distress cancer patients have to put up with in travelling to the Beatson (from Stobhill’s catchment areas) for their chemotherapy and other infusions.

We have our own state-of- the-art, modern ‘New Stobhill’.

Friends I’ve got to know in Glasgow’s Southside tell me they go to the New Victoria rather than the Beatson for their treatment, a less stressful option.

So why can’t we go to Stobhill?

Sometime ago now reporter Caren McPate interviewed me on my experiences of my cancer and of travelling to the Beatson.

Fortunately my husband is a Taxi driver and generally was available to get me there, but what about those who struggle with public transport?

At one time our MSP Fiona McLeod was going to investigate a better option with public transport.

As you can imagine my life was turned upside down when I was diagnosed with breast cancer.

My fears were compounded in having to go to the Beatson, when our hospital was just on the doorstep.

I support wholly the campaigners who are struggling to get GGCHB to recognise this need at the New Stobhill.

They say it’s numbers, could the same be happening here in massaging figures to suit GGCHB as was found out this past week over operations

Surely nobody is going to tell me there are insufficient cancer patients in North Glasgow to justify a unit at our hospital. Who’s kidding who?

Is it possible Audit Scotland could be asked to do a comparison study for Stobhill and the Victoria? We might get a truthful answer.

I well remember the ‘hand-out’ round about the time of the ‘new’ Stobhill opening saying cancer was included.Did it drop off the table?

I await answers with interest.

Elizabeth Nicol,

Breast Cancer Patient

(now in remission)

WHAT do I think of the late Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher?

I think her the greatest British woman of the past century. She was massive in character, sincere, majestic. If she had possessed humour she would have been too good to live. Eagles don’t laugh. I hear she once visited the Whitelaws at Gartshore estate.

Robert A Penney,

Donaldson Street,


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